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New Curator at The Hyde Museum

Dr. Bryn Schockmel Ph.D

Dr. Bryn Schockmel Ph.D. is the new curator of the permanent collection at the Hyde Museum, located at 161 Warren Street in Glens Falls.  The Hyde Collection is housed in the refurbished historic home of Louis and Charlotte Hyde – Charlotte Hyde established a trust in 1952 that dedicated her home and her extensive art collection to the community.

Charlotte Hyde’s vision was stated in the trust: “To establish and maintain a museum for the exhibition of art objects… and to promote and cultivate the study and improvement of fine arts, for the education and benefit of the residents of Glens Falls and vicinity and the general public.“

As curator, Dr. Bryn Schockmel will be responsible for carrying out Charlotte’s mission at the Hyde Museum. Bryn has strong ties to the Glens Falls area – a decade ago, she had an internship at The Hyde, and she earned her Bachelor’s degree from Skidmore College. 

Bryn’s education continued overseas at The Courtault Institute in London. This is where she earned her Masters Degree in Northern Renaissance Art History; then, she attended Boston University, where she earned her Ph.D in Italian Renaissance Art History. Bryn began her career in Oklahoma City at OKCMOA with a fellowship of provenance research – through this research, the ownership and history of a piece of art is traced. Bryn stayed in Oklahoma City for a total of about three years, and stayed on as curator of several exhibitions after completing her fellowship.

On January 9, 2023, Bryn started as the curator of the permanent collection at The Hyde. “My background is in Renaissance, and I wanted to be back in the Northeast. I wanted to be in a museum with a strong renaissance collection, which the Hyde has; we’ve got our Botticelli, and early modern in general like the Rembrandt, and the El Greco, so I saw this opportunity as a good fit for me” Bryn said. 

Bryn has an abundance of energy and enthusiasm when she talks about both her role at the Hyde and Charlotte’s Collection: “As I’ve been learning more and more… reading about Charlotte and going through our collection’s database, I’m impressed by how diverse her tastes were… We have some medieval stained glass windows, and we have all of these early modern paintings. We also have our Picasso, so it’s such a broad spectrum. There is a lot of furniture and decorative art… It’s going to be a lot of fun to work with because there is such a variety, and there are so many things that I can do.”

This year is the 60th Anniversary of The Hyde Museum. To celebrate, The Hyde is putting on a David Smith exhibition – Smith, an American Abstract expressionist sculpture and painter, is best known for creating large steel abstract geometric sculptures, and is recognized as one of the great sculptors of the 20th century. This exhibition will feature around 25 pieces, on loan from both public and private collections and the estate of David Smith. Smith was a friend of Charlotte Hyde, and a key figure in the founding of The Hyde Museum – he was one its earliest trustees.

For the celebration, Bryn will be putting together a show in one of the smaller galleries in the museum. This show will focus on Charlotte, and feature items from the vault that have not recently been on display, showcasing Charlotte’s diverse taste in art. There will also be a recent acquisition show, to remind the public that the Hyde Collection is still growing: “The recent acquisition show will feature the works that we have acquired over the last five years or so. These are pieces that maybe haven’t been out on view yet… Some people might think that our collection is static, but we are constantly acquiring new works of art” Bryn said.

Dr. Bryn Schockmel has an intrinsic enthusiasm for The Hyde family, Charlotte herself, the house, and the art collection, and this enthusiasm has been recognized by Norman Dasher Junior, the CEO of The Hyde Museum: “We’re thrilled to welcome Dr. Schockmel to The Hyde Collection team. A dynamic expert in her field, she is joining The Hyde at an incredibly exciting time as we celebrate the museum’s 60th anniversary. Dr. Schockmel shares our passion for the mission of The Hyde: To maintain a museum for the exhibition of the permanent collection and to promote and cultivate the improvement of the fine arts education and benefit of the residents of Glens Falls and vicinity and the general public” he said. 

In her role as curator, Dr. Schockmel will be able to advance the vision of Charlotte Hyde, as well as a greater understanding and appreciation of the collection through research, lectures, and writing. The Hyde Museum is open Thursday through Sunday, 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM; for more information, please visit hydecollection.org